Substance Abuse

textures-grass-and-wheat-32.ztIf you answer yes to 2 or more of these questions, it is recommended that you obtain a professional evaluation of your adolescent for possible substance abuse or other issues that should be addressed.

Teens often exhibit intense and contradictory behavior as they navigate the maturation process. Unfortunately some turn to alcohol and substances. Sometimes substance abuse is not directly evident and manifests in behavioral changes. The quiz below is meant to help you to recognize some of these.

  1. Have you noticed an unexplained drop in grades?
  2. Has your son or daughter changed his/her set of friends and avoided introducing them to you?
  3. Have you noticed your teen developing exaggerated mood swings – becoming easily upset or angry or not being as happy as they once were?
  4. Has there been a change in level of your teen’s compliance/defiance – pushing limits, not doing chores, missing curfew, staying out late without calling, etc.?
  5. Has your teen become more secretive – sharing little or none of his/her personal life, locking his/her door, keeping a lock-box, etc.?
  6. Have you noticed your child spending more time alone or in his/her room than usual?
  7. Do you notice your son or daughter sleeping more than usual?
  8. Has your child’s physical hygiene declined?
  9. Has your child experienced a drastic weight loss or gain?
  10. Have you been informed that your son or daughter is skipping class, sleeping in school, not doing homework or declining in performance?
  11. Has your son or daughter begun to avoid family meals, religious activities, recreational trips, previously enjoyed activities?
  12. Has your teen begun selling possessions or does he/she seem to always have money without an identifiable source?


It can be heart-breaking to suspect a loved one may be suffering from a substance use disorder. The test below can guide you to determine if your loved one can benefit from an assessment with a professional or an intervention guided by our specialists. You are not alone – we are here to help. Along with substance abuse treatment we have a family program that can help you face this problem and get some relief.


  1. Are you unsure about what is normal related to a loved one’s alcohol or substance (Marijuana, Oxycontin, Valium, Cocaine, etc.) use?
  2. Is your loved one defensive when you try to discuss his/her alcohol or substance use?
  3. Does your loved one ask you to cover for him/her at work or school because alcohol or substance use has interfered with his/her attendance?
  4. Have you discovered alcohol or substances hidden in your home?
  5. Has your loved one ever driven under the influence of alcohol or substances?
  6. Does a loved one exhibit a “Jekyll and Hyde” personality when drinking alcohol or using substances?
  7. Has your loved one ever promised to stop drinking alcohol or stop using substances only to return to drinking or using?
  8. Does your loved one spend a lot of time at a bar/club with his/her friends? Does your loved one suffer from frequent hangovers?
  9. Have you noticed your loved one has increased the amount of alcohol he/she drinks?
  10. Has a loved one ever experienced the following after a period of not drinking alcohol or abstaining from using substances: irritability, nervousness, sleep difficulty, depressed mood, fatigue, and increased hand tremor, change in appetite, nausea, muscle aches or diarrhea?
  11. Does your loved one crave alcohol or substances?